There are marble fish kissing
in the basin of a fountain,
their huge lips pressing together.
Their googly eyes are fish stares
that do not mean love or passion.
They only mean
I am a fish who just happens to be so stylized.
The water shoots up between their lips,
down their scaly bodies,
twisting and intertwining pieces
of glittering gray and white granite.
How big and goofy they are,
also how elegant, how mysterious.
They evoke ancient villas
where aristocrats play out their furtive love affairs,
stories that always end in pain, in vain,
with lots of blood on the stairs.
I'm glad to safely sit
and sip my coffee
thinking of my next story --
the one that will have nothing to do with me.
Jennifer Burnau is a teacher and artist living in Bloomfield. Her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in "Voices from the Attic" vols. xiii and xviii and Pittsburgh City Paper.